Paul Dyas

Investment Director at JM Finn

What’s the best – and worst – game dish you’ve ever eaten?

My absolute favourite after a day in the field is partridge with creamy mashed potatoes, broccoli and heaps of bread sauce, washed down by a deep red, followed by a chocolate pudding of some description. As to worst, if I had to choose my least favourite it would probably be duck. On most menus there’s too much fruit with it for my liking.

Is there any game you don’t or wouldn’t eat?

No not really, especially if it has been well hung and cooked.

Name the best shooting property you’ve stayed in, and why.

A great friend had a family estate in the Borders of Scotland near Hawick, and we were very kindly invited up there most years to shoot and fish with the family. It would always be an extremely long drive from the south up to the Borders, but we could be guaranteed the most fabulous welcome, normally with many bottles of claret. Most evenings were spent around their large dining room table, chatting and playing games with great friends – very happy memories.

Tell us about your most memorable – not necessarily the best – day’s shooting.

Undoubtedly one of the most memorable days was at the Philleigh Shoot in Cornwall. Having done most of my shooting in the South East, to find myself standing on a pallet in the middle of the River Fal, on a mud bank, at low tide, shooting crossing pheasants and watching the gun dogs retrieve across the mud flats – wonderful.

To what lengths should shoots (and guns) go, to ensure as much shot game as possible enters the food chain?

In my mind this is absolutely essential to ensure the continuation of shooting as a sport. The increasing size of shoot bags only serves to increase this challenge, and I believe it is incumbent upon all shoots and guns to try and ensure that game is not wasted. If that means reducing bags, then so be it.

You are given a day’s shooting absolutely anywhere in the world, all expenses paid for you and seven guests. Where would you choose, with whom, and what would you eat and drink for lunch and dinner?

Although I would love to explore shooting overseas, having never had the opportunity, I would undoubtedly stay here in the UK. My father learnt to shoot as a young boy in Shropshire; I grew up with his stories of towering pheasants and it has always been my wish to follow in his footsteps and shoot at places where he learnt to as a young boy.

Regarding food, I would probably choose to shoot through then enjoy a big lunch after the final drive. Although I do love game, to top off this day I would probably choose a more simple menu of roast beef, Yorkshire pud, crispy new potatoes, broccoli and lots of eye watering horseradish sauce, followed by apple and blackberry crumble with ice cream, with some wonderful cheeses afterwards. All washed down with a pint of Harvey’s on arrival and something like a nice St Emilion, followed by a seat in front of a large crackling fire, then sleep.